Cook's Illustrated just did a story on French Toast and we thought we might find new techniques to improve upon our rather slapdash method. It turns out that we don't mind the 'egginess' that caused the Cook's writers to eliminate the whites and that the melted butter was good but not required. We also don't bother to stale the bread. The slackers win!
I have found that it is quite tasty to salt and pepper each slice of bread (on the 'up' side) as it cooks, but you can also add the salt and pepper to the egg and milk mixture.
We have used lots of different bread for this, but have settled on a sliced artisan bread from Grand Central bakery (the Como). Pre-sliced bread isn't necessary, but does seem to work the best.
5-9 slices bread (staled or not)
1- 1 1/2 c. milk (any kind)
Salt and pepper to taste
1/2 TBSP oil
1 TBSP butter
- Gently preheat a cast iron skillet or griddle over medium-low heat for 10 minutes or so (to ensure even heat distribution over the whole surface, particularly if using a griddle that spans two gas burners)
- Beat the eggs and milk in a bowl. Add salt and pepper to taste if desired or wait and do this by the slice
- Put half of the oil and butter in the pan or on the griddle and let it melt, spreading it around. Turn the heat up to medium
- Soak the bread slices in the egg/milk mixture and then put in the pan/griddle
- Salt and pepper the top side of each slice if you haven't salted the mixture
- Cook until golden brown then flip. Cook until golden on the other side
- Melt the remaining oil and butter and cook the remaining slices
- Serve plain or with fruit spread, syrup, fresh fruit, yogurt, pear or huckleberry sauce or anything else that sounds appealing. Makes a great breakfast-for-dinner treat